Parrot Bebop 2

What we like:

  • Low price
  • 14MP still images
  • Flies in the rain
  • Camera protected from crashes
  • Decent follow-me mode

What we don't:

  • No 4K video
  • Digital image stabilization only
  • 8GB internal flash memory
  • No collision avoidance

You certainly don't have to be an expert to fly the Parrot Bepop 2 ($699), and if you're an absolute newbie to drones it's an option that you should be looking at. Its ease-of-flight is high, and replacement part costs are low. It can be flown entirely using a touch interface on your phone, but if you want to fly with tactile sticks you can purchase the Parrot Sky Controller, as well as upgrades like FPV goggles.

One advantage of the Bebop 2, especially for new pilots, is that the camera is protected inside the shell, so crash resistance is pretty good. It's also the only drone on our list that boasts the ability to fly in the rain. How sweet is that?

Professionals or enthusiasts might find some of the Bebop 2's specifications lacking, however. Notably, it's the only drone on this list that doesn't include support for 4K video, maxing out at 1080/30p. It has a still photo resolution of 14MP, though it's limited to 8GB of internal flash memory. With 14MP photos this drone is far better suited for stills than video. There's also no true mechanical gimbal for the camera, so while there is image stabilization, it's digital stabilization, which is why the video resolution is so low in comparison to the photo resolution (cropping for stability).

Another limitation is range. The Parrot works via Wi-Fi signal instead of using a dedicated radio controller. This means that the maximum range is 300m (unobstructed, and not near EM interference such as power lines and radio towers).

One advantage of the BEBOP 2, especially for new pilots, is that the camera is protected inside the shell, so crash resistance is pretty good.

The Bebop 2 has a 'follow-me' mode, where the drone actually follows the person that has the controller, phone, or GPS sensor (in this case phone) and keeps them in frame. This mode also has a variant called 'auto-framing' that will visually track moving objects so that you only have to worry about flying the drone. It’s like having a 2-operator drone system (great for the kids’ soccer games and whatnot).

If you're looking to do some selfie filming using the follow-me mode, or if you’re thinking of filming your child’s soccer game, this may be a viable drone for you. But don’t even think of using it for extreme sports (like the drone following you while mountain biking), because it has no collision avoidance system. Follow-me is actually pretty good as long as you use it in wide open areas.

The Bebop 2 has a 25-minute flight time. It's batteries are reasonably priced at $69.98.

If you're primarily into photography, but don't want to splurge on the Phantom 4 Pro, this is a great option for you, as it's suited more to photo than video (due to the stabilization and cropping).

Parrot BEBOP 2 Rating

Build Quality

Ease of Use
Camera Gimbal

Sensors/Flight Control System

Weather Resistance (rain/wind) Portability
Battery Life Crash Resistance/Repair Cost
Overall Rating